Selzer’s tax problem

By:  Diane Benjamin McLean County Board member Dave Selzer has a problem paying his property taxes.  See this previous story: More information has surfaced. First, there is a thriving business buying taxes for people who can’t afford to pay them: Unpaid property taxes create a serious cash-flow problem for McLean County, Illinois. To […]

More CIRA stuff

By:  Diane Benjamin TAXPAYERS own the Central Illinois Regional Airport, but you know very little about the management or financial position. See the CIRA website here:  (Under “City Information” – Mitsubishi is still listed) It has ZERO transparency!  There are no links to financial information, agendas, minutes of meetings, or who is on the […]

Nothing worse than lies

By:  Diane Benjamin Bloomington’s illustrious Mayor Renner was interviewed on WJBC yesterday.  Hear it here: Credit goes to Scott Laughlin for calling Renner out on the budget task force sham since all we’ve seen are massive tax and spending proposals ever since.  But, it’s only another $20,000,000.  If the population is still anywhere near […]

Bloomington Buying Awards

By:  Diane Benjamin Yesterday WEEK reported: Bloomington awarded certificate in financial reporting By WEEK Producer The media must think some group swoops around the country reading financial statements of local governments until they find exceptional examples of good financial reporting – then a certificate of greatness is awarded. Seriously? Bloomington bought the award! Last […]

Everybody taxing you

By:  Diane Benjamin City of Bloomington is proposing spending 11% more.  See proposed Budget Presentation page 4. . See McLean County 2016 Fiscal Year recommenced budget: The County passed a budget which spends 7% more in the General Fund.  Yes, your property taxes are going up. Everybody wants more of your money. Who […]

More abuse last night

By:  Diane Benjamin Scott Black was missing last night!  More proof the elected Council representing the voters is just a campaign slogan. I had to laugh during a discussion about the proposed storage facility in south Bloomington and the Zoning Board of Appeals.  Nobody showed up to protest the ZBA approval, even though the meeting […]

2015 eating & traveling on YOU

By: Diane Benjamin Last night David Hales revealed his proposed budget with HUGE increases in spending.  If the Council has a death wish they will pass it as proposed.  History says the Council will tell David Hales to cut it.   Hales already has the cuts lined up, citizens are being played.  The Council just […]

Living off government

By:  Diane Benjamin Jeff Giebelhausen has a long history of doing redevelopment projects for government.  When taxpayers can be put on the hook for paying  part of the cost, projects the private sector would never touch are suddenly attractive. Tari salivates over downtown Bloomington, therefore Giebelhausen is on it! Here’s one of Giebelhausen’s past projects […]

Tyranny Tari

By:  Diane Benjamin I find it amazing the Pantagraph has details of the budget David Hales is going to propose Monday night, but the citizens don’t! Nothing is included in the packet, do the aldermen have details?  Obviously the Pantagraph is running interference for the City yet again. In 2013 the General Fund spending was  […]

Monday’s Council handouts

By:  Diane Benjamin Funny how the Wildwood property was redeveloped without any incentives from government.  Probably the only place in Bloomington where capitalism still reigns.  (From the Pantagraph story) The huge east-side TIF will get approved.  It will create a slush fund for the City to use however it wants – in the TIF district.  […]

Jan Traveling AND Eating at your expense

By:  Diane Benjamin January P-Card items:  See Bills and Payroll 2/22/16 ADMIN City Council Expenses Hilton Capital $ 335.60 US Conference of Mayors – Lodging ADMIN City Council Expenses American Airlines $ 336.00 US Conference of Mayors – Flight ADMIN City Council Expenses American Airlines $ 25.00 US Conference of Mayors – Luggage charge […]

Giebelhausen: REVENUE sharing

By:  Diane Benjamin This document was handed to the Council last Tuesday night.  It has since been posted for the public:  Giebelhausen-additional information A few things struck me as strange.  The words Revenue Sharing are used when what is really meant is Cost Sharing. Yes, the City will see increased revenues if the project is […]

TIF, Taxes, Talk

By:  Diane Benjamin Random thoughts on last night’s meeting: Congrats to Alderman Lower and Alderman Mwilambwe.  They stood up for citizens.  Public comment was moved to after the presentation against Lower’s wishes, Mwilambwe forced public comment before the Council “voted” to keep the project alive.  Not one speaker supported it.  Funny how none of the […]

Hales confirmed it

By:  Diane Benjamin David Hales confirmed last night the City will be extending the Coliseum Management Contract with the failures managing it now. Revenue is millions away from what citizens were told to expect.  Profits don’t pay any of the bond payments – citizens do with higher Sales Taxes.  Reports from before the Coliseum was […]

More Pinocchios Tari

By:  Diane Benjamin Watch this short campaign video Tari made in 2013 while running for office.  Very close to the end he claims infrastructure can be improved without raising taxes.  Funny how he stumbled over the proper words though. Since Tari became Mayor, $10,000,000 has been borrowed for roads with plans to borrow A LOT […]

Michael Gorman? Please stand up

By:  Diane Benjamin Only two short month ago, the Council approved the appointment of Michael Gorman to the McLean county Regional Planning Commission.  He was appointed to represent the City of Bloomington on the Commission. Dec 14 2015 – Page 2 Michael Gorman is associated with Bike Blono: Note his middle initial is C. Tonight […]

Tari: 5 Pinocchios

By:  Diane Benjamin Tari talking points: The big picture on the budget is that: 1) we are not doing anything that the city didn’t do three, four or five years ago 2) our revenues were flat and our costs keep going up a little over 2% each year How much truth is in Tari’s statements? […]

Selzer now running scared

By:  Diane Benjamin Dave has now protected his Facebook page – only his “Friends” can see it.  He wrote this however: David Selzer Apologies to my friends. If you have received any “hate” noties from the person involved with this or their friends. Seems I and possibly some of you are now targets……I HATE politics […]

Dave Selzer: Tax deadbeat

By:  Diane Benjamin Another reader called and said I should check McLean County Board member Dave Selzer’s property tax payment record.  See below from the County website: See this post from earlier today: Selzer can’t pay his property taxes, but he wants to spend your money as a County Board member.  He was […]

County’s David Selzer: Them vrs Us

Don’t miss the two followup stories: By:  Diane Benjamin The post below appeared on Republican County Board member Dave Selzer’s Facebook page yesterday.  The comments are even more revealing.  Dave agrees with Democrat Tari Renner 75% of the time! The McLean County transparency rating by the Illinois Policy Institute is F.  I knew […]


By:  Diane Benjamin David Hales is bemoaning taking $1.4 million from the General Fund to cover services because the fees charged aren’t high enough to cover the costs. News Flash:  You weren’t fooling anybody when you hired yet another consultant to exam the City’s fees! $1,400,000 The General Fund is $94,553,780.  That $1.4 mil is […]

Earth to Vogel . . Earth to Vogel

By:  Diane Benjamin The obvious alien writer at the Pantagraph, Steve Vogel, demanded .04 a gallon gas tax increase today.  Maybe he sneaked into the country when the old Soviet Union dissolved.  Maybe he was dropped on his head.  He thinks the City needs more money for roads. Citizens expect their government to handle: Police […]

Come out of the closet Mark

By:  Diane Benjamin I know, from the title you are thinking something else! I’ve pointed out for at least a year the Pantagraph Editorials never say who wrote them.  Lately they’ve had a FEW (with emphasis on few), written by somebody other than the management, stating views I agree with.  I’d love to know who […]

Tuesday’s shakedown

By:  Diane Benjamin Here’s the hotel proposal for next Tuesday.  CA 02-16-16 COW No, I didn’t change the name – COW was already in it. I see a number of problems, let me know what you see. Part of Tuesday’s meeting is approving the minutes from the January 19th meeting.  Sick Leave Buy Back was […]

The tale of the Coliseum, Tari, & a hotel

By:  Diane Benjamin I’ve been reading Pantagraph reports this morning from 2000-2004 pertaining to the Coliseum.  If you have a Bloomington library card, you can access ProQuest on-line and read them yourself.  Search “Sports arena downtown Bloomington”.  Unless you are signed into the library system, the Watchtower links below will not work. Yes, there was […]

More Hales failures

By:  Diane Benjamin It should be obvious to long-time and new readers that David Hales, Mayor Renner, and the City Council aren’t supervising the management of the Coliseum.  Why remains to be determined.  It’s unconscionable for the City to be negotiating a new contract with CIAM considering all the violations perpetrated by them in the […]

Court Delay

By:  Diane Benjamin I will be filing today for a 28 day extension in submitting my Amended Motion. The reason is to discuss the case with possible attorneys. The only information I will reveal now is: they aren’t local they specialize in FOIA cases  

Hales not happy

By:  Diane Benjamin The Council balked at David Hales’ plan to charge for “buckets” last night.  The plan was just too complicated.  Think he was happy?  Hit play below. . Easy and straight forward was never part of the plan. What happens if you buy a house that already had their 2 free pickups?  Hales’ […]

UPDATE Spending leftovers

  The packet is labeled Consent Agenda, it was on the regular agenda. The presentation made a good case for buying it. By:  Diane Benjamin Page 170 of the packet:  Packet 2-8-16 Leftover money must be spent! Hales and Renner  compartmentalized spending on purpose.  Hence, this compartment got too much, so it’s free money! Buying […]

Taxing made easy

By:  Diane Benjamin Monday night the Council is holding a Work Session to hear the results of the Fee study.  See the packet information here:  Fee Study Enterprise Funds were created to raise taxes.  Solid waste pickup was included in the taxes you already paid just 10 short years ago.  Monday night the Council will […]